Weird name, how about if is was called Grilled Butterflied Chicken?
That’s easier to say; Spatchcock is the professional culinary term.
According to The Oxford Companion to Food: “"The theory is that the word is an abbreviation of 'dispatch the cock,' a phrase used to indicate a summary way of grilling a bird after splitting it open down the back and spreading the two halves out flat.”
A split and flattened chicken not only takes less time to cook, but cooks more fully and is moister. There’s lots of spatchcock chicken recipe variations online; this one is from a recent issue of (Martha Stewart) Living magazine.
Whole chickens were on sale this week, temps are HOT, and Grenville was grilling — GREAT combo. Cold leftovers will be great with salad cause it’s still gonna be HOT.
Grilled Spatchcocked Chicken
Prepare the chicken early in the day, refrigerate, then take out 30 minutes before grilling.
- 1 medium onion, peeled, cut in half
- 1 large garlic glove
- 1/3 C packed fresh herbs (rosemary, thyme, parsley, sage; used basil and oregano from our garden)
- 1/4 C extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 fresh lemon, zest only removed in strips with peeler
- 1 chicken (3-1/2 to 4 lb.) spatchcocked/butterflied
- coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
To spatchcock a chicken, cut along each side of the backbone with shears. Remove the backbone and reserve for stock (freezes for up to 3 months). Turn the bird breast side up, flatten with your palm. (If you want a graphic visual, see the LINKS below.)
- Puree onion, garlic, herbs, oil, and lemon zest in food processor.
- Rub some of puree under skin of chicken breast. Rub remaining puree over rest of bird.
- Refrigerate at least 6 hours to 8 hours. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper and/or lemon before grilling.
- Heat grill to medium high. Grill chicken breast side down, covered with vent open, until charred, about 10-15 minutes.
- Flip and cook 30 minutes more then flip again; grill until internal temp reaches 165 degrees in thickest part of breast, 5 minutes longer.
- Let rest 5 minutes before serving.